A Resume-maker in the Browser

Why can't we just CSS our resumes again?

Making a resume sucks.

Let’s think about it this way: A resume is a list of repeating elements (or, perhaps, a few different kinds of lists). Each element is a job you’ve had once, and each job probably has a bunch of things attached to it that you want to style differently: dates you worked there, title, responsibilities, etc.

A resume is also a piece of paper that you want to use to represent yourself. You want everything lined up and spaced in the ideal way to make it easy to read, but also contain as much killer awesome information as possible.

Life tip: if you have repeating elements, and you want to position them just right, using Microsoft Word is a really good way to give yourself stress nightmares. You know what I like using to style things? CSS.

Oh, and you know how I like to store objects? JavaScript.

So this little handy tool lets you input your work history – plus education, projects, skills, whatever you want, really – into a javascript file, make a handlebars template to output the results, and style the whole thing with CSS. Neat, right?

Of course, it’s only useful if you prefer javascript, handlebars, and CSS to a word processor. If you’re sitting here like, “great! what’s handlebars?” this might not be the tool for you. (If I tell you “It’s a javascript-based templating system” and you say, “Oh, yes, one of those, I know what those are like,” then you can stick around.)

Basically, if you’ve ever thought, ‘I wish I could use web technologies to create a paper document’, read on.

How do I use it?

This project uses Grunt and Sass and Handlebars.

First, run:

npm install

Then run:


Then, open your browser to localhost:8000/dest. I’m using the livereload browser extension to deal with that, but if your’e not, there’s a little script tag you can include at the bottom of the html instead.

Then, edit the files in the src/ directory! Put in your information, edit the template, do whatever you want.

Note: The grey box shows how big an 8.5x11 inch piece of paper is. If you overflow that box, you’re gonna have a bad time.

If you’re done and the resume looks the way you want it to, go into your browser and hit “Print”. Then, fiddle with the options as you see fit (pro tip: select Margins: None on chrome) and select “Save to PDF”. Now you have a PDF of your resume! This also preserves any hyperlinks, if you’re into that kind of thing.

Congratulations! You now have a cool new resume!